Abohar, October 19
Raising voice against the alleged discriminatory behaviour of the Cotton Corporation of India (CCI) against farmers on the issue of minimum support price (MSP), farmers today staged a dharna at the Gobindgarh terminal on the Abohar-Malout highway.
Bhartiya Kisan Union (BKU) leaders Subhash Godara, Vinod Doodi, Resham Kundal, Sukhmander Singh and Gurtej Singh said the central agency was discriminating against farmers by denying them the MSP. Citing an incident which took place today, the leaders said the central agency procured cotton from a poor farmer at Rs 5,608 per quintal claiming that it had 7 per cent moisture content, whereas an influential farmer was offered Rs 5,665 per
quintal despite his produce having a moisture content of 12 per cent.
They alleged that farmers in the cotton yard were being harassed, as the purchase process, which was to start at 9 am, was deliberately delayed by two hours. Around 400 cotton-laden vehicles reach the yard every day, but not all produce was sold
till evening due to late start of the bidding process. As a result, farmers faced problems while moving the goods to the factory, the leader added.
The BKU warned that if the CCI did not mend its ways, the farmers would be forced to intensify the stir.
CCI official Rajeev Sharma said the allegations were baseless. There was no discrimination at the time of bidding in the market. The agency had so far purchased 6,000 bales of ‘narma’ cotton in the local market, he said.
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